Michael Arndt Exits STAR WARS: EPISODE VII; J.J. Abrams & Lawrence Kasdan to Finish Script
Screenwriter Michael Arndt has departed STAR WARS: EPISODE VII.
In a post on StarWars.com, Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy confirmed that the LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE scribe has departed the film, slated as a return to the franchise, with director J.J. Abrams and former STAR WARS writer Lawrence Kasdan now handling scripting duties.
"I am very excited about the story we have in place and thrilled to have Larry and J.J. working on the script," Kennedy wrote. "There are very few people who fundamentally understand the way a Star Wars story works like Larry, and it is nothing short of incredible to have him even more deeply involved in its return to the big screen. J.J. of course is an incredible storyteller in his own right. Michael Arndt has done a terrific job bringing us to this point and we have an amazing filmmaking and design team in place already prepping for production."
Arndt was officially brought on by LucasFilm in September, after he worked independently on the script prior to Disney absorbing the studio.
Filming is set to begin Spring 2014 for an expected 2015 release.
Driven by a tremendously talented creative team, Lucasfilm's legendary Star Wars franchise has flourished for more than 35 years, and offers a virtually limitless universe of characters and stories to drive continued feature film releases and franchise growth over the long term. Star Wars resonates with consumers around the world and creates extensive opportunities for Disney to deliver the content across its diverse portfolio of businesses including movies, television, consumer products, games and theme parks. Star Warsfeature films have earned a total of $4.4 billion in global box to date, and continued global demand has made Star Wars one of the world's top product brands, and Lucasfilm a leading product licensor in the United States in 2011. The franchise provides a sustainable source of high quality, branded content with global appeal and is well suited for new business models including digital platforms, putting the acquisition in strong alignment with Disney's strategic priorities for continued long-term growth.
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